Florida’s Top Personal Injury Law Firm Serving the People of Crystal River, FL
We love Crystal River for its small-town feel and natural beauty. It didn’t take us long to figure out why the town bills itself as the “Home of the Manatee.” Whether strolling around the Kings Bay area, kayaking in Three Sisters Springs viewing manatees, or simply enjoying the warm local hospitality, Crystal River is hard to leave behind.
It’s a cold fact, however, that a serious injury can turn your life upside down in an instant – as fast, in fact, as it takes someone to make a careless decision. Pain and shock are the natural first reactions. When the shock wears off, the reality of your financial situation can bear down just as hard – mounting medical bills, lost time at work, and above all, a responsible party with a “that’s your problem” attitude.
Do You Need a Personal Injury Lawyer?
When you find yourself in this kind of distress, you are not likely to be in a position to “go it alone” – you will need some assistance from professionals to seek the compensation that you are entitled to. Not just any law firm will do, however; after all, any lawyer can hang up a shingle and go into business, even if he or she has never seen the inside of a courtroom or negotiated a dime in compensation. Indeed, your choice of legal representation could turn out to be the most important decision you make in the entire case.
At Abrahamson & Uiterwyk, personal injury law is what we do, and it is all we do. We don’t do corporate law, contract law, or criminal law. We don’t write wills, draft M&A agreements, or file trademark infringement lawsuits. We negotiate settlements and prosecute lawsuits on behalf of injured clients – all day, every day. We have been doing this for 25 years for over 15,000 injured clients. We are personal injury lawyers. Period.
Some of Our Areas of Practice
There are as many sub-fields of personal injury law as there are ways to get injured. A few of the most common fields practiced by our lawyer appear below:
Car Accidents: Florida has suffered a 43 percent increase in fatal traffic accidents since 2014 – about 3,000 people a year are no longer with us, while hundreds of thousands suffer injuries. The sad fact is that many of these accidents were entirely preventable but for the negligence of one of the parties involved. When this happens, it’s time to take action.
Truck Accidents: Roughly 40 tons of steel barreling at you is a terrifying experience. Unfortunately, the aftermath of a serious truck accident can be equally terrifying. In many cases, a truck accident is caused when a commercial driver violates one of the many regulations that govern the trucking industry. Even with no specific regulatory violation, however, a personal injury case is often winnable.
Motorcycle Accidents: Motorcycles are dangerous, pure and simple. Nevertheless, motorcycle accidents are often caused by motorists who are simply not on the lookout for smaller vehicles. Motorcycles, unfortunately, rack up some of the highest rates of injury and death due to the rider’s lack of protection and the ease with which a motorcyclist can get “lost” in another motorist’s blind spot.
Slip and Fall Accidents: About a million people per year are hospitalized for slip and fall accidents and a disproportionate number of them elderly. When the accident takes place in someone else’s premises, especially a commercial establishment, the owner or renter could bear liability if negligence was involved.
Medical Malpractice: It is disturbing when an irresponsible motorist injures another motorist. It is shocking, however, when a doctor injures his or her own patient through negligent medical treatment. Unfortunately, the same few doctors tend to keep committing medical malpractice over and over again. Medical malpractice lawsuits are a way of compensating an injured patient and getting the attention of a careless doctor.
Dog Bites: Only one or two percent of dogs inflict injuries serious enough to require emergency room treatment. Nevertheless, that adds up to hundreds of thousands of injured victims per year. In Florida, dog owners are normally liable for the actions of their dogs even if they had no reason to believe the dog would behave aggressively – you don’t have to prove that the owner was negligent.
Nursing Home Abuse: Most of the nearly 700 nursing homes in Florida are competent and professional, and the same can be said of the vast majority of nursing home staff. A significant minority, however, are prone to carelessness and even intentional abuse. A good nursing home abuse lawyer knows exactly how to handle this situation.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Personal Injury
Can I win a claim over a prescription drug that failed to warn of known dangers?
Yes. Under Florida product liability law, you can recover damages if you are injured by a defect in a product that rendered the product “unreasonably dangerous.” Since a prescription drug is considered a “product” under Florida product liability law, and since failure to warn of known dangers is considered a defect in the product, you could win a product liability lawsuit if you prove: (i) that you were injured, (ii) that the failure to warn of known dangers rendered the product unreasonably dangerous, and (iii) that this danger actually caused your injury.
Can I still file a claim if I don’t discover my injury until a long time after my accident?
Under most circumstances, yes. Florida applies a statute of limitations deadline for personal injury claims. In general, you have four years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit. If your injury was such that you couldn’t have been expected to detect it immediately (some brain and spinal cord injuries are like this), the beginning of this four-year period can be delayed until the point when you discovered or should have discovered the injury.
In a Florida medical malpractice case, however, the deadline is two years after the medical malpractice occurred, or up to four years if you did not discover the injury immediately. Certain loopholes apply.
If an accident victim dies, can a claim still be filed?
Yes. Instead of a personal injury lawsuit, it would be appropriate to file a claim under the Florida Wrongful Death Act. The plaintiff must be the personal representative of the victim’s probate estate. Normally, this will be the person named as executor in the victim’s last will and testament. If the victim did not leave a will, a court will appoint a personal representative, which is usually a close relative.
Proceeds of a wrongful death lawsuit can be substantial. They are divided among the victim’s estate and close relatives. Potential damages include intangible losses by surviving relatives, such as loss of care and companionship.
Who can I sue if I am injured by a defective product, such as an automobile component?
In the event that you were injured by a defective automobile component (such as a malfunctioning airbag), you can sue anyone in the chain of distribution of the product, regardless of whether or not they were at fault. For example, you could sue the distributor of the product for a manufacturing defect, even though the distributor did not manufacture the product. This “no fault” basis of liability essentially forces manufacturers and merchants of products to act as insurers against any harm they might cause. Other bases of liability may be available, as well.
Can I successfully sue a trucking company for an 18-wheeler accident caused by a negligent truck driver?
Probably not, although in some cases you can. Normally, the driver of an 18-wheeler is an independent contractor rather than an employee of the trucking company (the difference is related to the degree of independence that the driver enjoys from the trucking company). If the driver does turn out to be an employee, you are likely to be able to hold the trucking company liable if the driver is found liable, although some legal exceptions exist. Even if you cannot win a lawsuit against the trucking company, the driver likely carries a liability insurance policy that you can claim against.
Stand Up for Your Rights
At Abrahamson & Uiterwyk, we are proud of its “AV” rating, the highest possible rating from Martindale-Hubbell, a national law firm rating system. The “A” signifies that the firm’s legal ability is “very high to preeminent.” The “V” denotes that our firm observes “very high” ethical standards. Also we are an accredited business of the Better Business Bureau.
Contact us today. If it is inconvenient for you to come to our office, we can evaluate your case over the phone and, when necessary, travel to your home or office. If you live or work in Crystal River, call us today at 800-753-5203 or contact us online by email or live chat. No matter when you call, we have a representative available 24/7.